A Hike up Koko Head Stairs

Since scuba certification wrapped up on Tuesday, we decided to spend Wednesday doing some touristy things. Our first stop of the day was to the Arizona Memorial to pay tribute and remember the attack on Pearl Harbor and the lives that were lost. This was a touching memorial that was well worth the visit.


The Arizona Memorial (as seen arriving by boat during the tour)


The base of gun turret #3 on USS Arizona

After we left the memorial, we headed back to Waikiki to grab lunch at a food truck park. Then we decided to take a hike. Our original Hawaii plans were focused around beaches and hikes, but then we decided to get scuba certified and things changed. Luckily we had enough time for one hike so we decided to go big and visit Koko Head Trail.


Kerry posing for a pic at the trailhead of Koko Head!


Jenny and Kerry taking a breather!

Which is also known as Koko Head Stairs. Because wow. Stairs. Lots of stairs.

Some facts on Koko Head Trail:

  • The top of Koko Head is about 1,200 feet above Hawaii Kai.
  • People say it’s 1,048 steps to the top. It seems like a TON more. And then you have to go back down them.
  • The trail is really steep. You think it’s steep at first and then it just gets worse.
  • When you get to the top the views are totally worth the sweat, panting and shaky legs.
  • The hike down seems like a walk in the park after you have a chance to recover while taking in the views at the top.
  • The total hike is only about 1.5 miles round trip, but when you make the decision to start this hike at 1:30 pm in the blazing heat it seems like much further.

We started the hike after a huge lunch and at the hottest part of the day. As some people have said, it’s “not so much of a hike as it is a workout with a view”. There were lots of pit stops to catch our breath, to hide in a tiny spot of shade, to take in the view, to snap a few selfies and to get really excited about cloud cover or a slight breeze.


Incredible views at the top!

We made it to the top in about 40 minutes, then wandered around in awe. It was breathtaking. We could see so much and so far away and everything we saw was beautiful and completely worth the 1,000+ stairs we trekked up. After a break to enjoy a significant breeze and to take some photos, we made our way back down. This was pretty simple and only required paying attention (and some pretty crafty crab walking by Kerry). When we made it back to the starting point we were sweaty disasters, but so happy that we did it.


Jenny reflecting on how lucky we are to be on this incredible journey of a lifetime

If only we had time for more hikes in Hawaii… but today we leave and head on to New Zealand! We’ll just have to come back and experience more of Hawaii in the future.

~ Kerry & Jenny

2 thoughts on “A Hike up Koko Head Stairs

  1. moonmusic says:

    Thanks for your fun facts about Koko Head Stairs. Props to you gals for doing that hike and at midday no less! Love the selfie with the trail in the background and the one at the end of Jenny’s back, overlooking the Hawaiian landscape from the top.


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